by Scott Portelli
What Snoot are you?
Snoots are being used more commonly by underwater photographers to isolate a subject, reduce backscatter or give more creative control by using directional light on areas of their subject.
Most underwater photographers use snoots for macro photography but directional fiber optic light can be used for wide angle photography to highlight a subject in a scene as well. With this type of technique you can separate small subjects from their backgrounds and reduce backscatter.
Currently, there are only a few really good fiber optic snoots on the market that are designed for specific strobe configurations. If you are using an Ikelite, Sea & Sea or Inon configuration, then there are several options to choose from.
If you are using Inon zz240 strobes, then Blusnoot has a system, which is easy to fit and allows 1 or 2 fiber optic tubes on the one strobe. The two flexible ball arms that contain the multi-core fiber optic cables, are attached directly onto the front of the strobe like a cap. Only one strobe is needed, as two arms are supplied with each BlueSnoot Fiber Optic Snoot Set.
Reefnet also has a fiber optic Micro Snoot for the Ikelite DS161 strobes which allows for 1 or 2 fiber optic tubes on the one strobe as well. This option has an easy configuration with the strobe plate fitting over the front of the strobe and coinciding screws that lock into the existing holes on the rubber rim of the strobe. Each Fiber Optic Snoot arm is made of 150 x 0.75mm fiber optic cables.
Another manufacturer Deepshot has a snoot system called the ‘Deepshot Tentacle’ for both the Sea & Sea YS strobes and the Inon z240 strobes. The Z Tentacle series are 3D printed solid core fiber optic snoots. They have 10mm thick solid core fiber optic cable as their light conveying material and they come with 2 x different sized nozzles for more narrow beams of light.
The difference with the Deepshot snoots are that they only have the ability to place one snoot tube on the strobe plate at this time.
Most of the Strobe units can be bent to an almost 180 degree angle which really gives you the flexibility to be creative and experiment with the light.
For more information check out the following:
Blusnoot – Inon z240 fiber optic snoot
Reefnet – Ikelite 161 fiber optic snoots
Deepshot – Sea & Sea YS-D1 and manybe YS-D2